Nvidia quad-core mobile processor

We're all still wrapping our heads around dual-core processors. So it only makes sense that Nvidia decided to drop the next next generation mobile processor on us at Mobile World Congress. Codenamed Kal-El (yeah, like Super Man), we're now ushering in the era (on the technical side, anyway) of quad-core mobile processors.

What you'll see in the demo after the break is not Tegra 3 -- it's a hot-off-the-press processor that's more powerful than anything you've held in your hand and that Nvidia says gets a 5x performance boost over Tegra 2. On top of that, it's got a 12-core graphics processor built in, with support for stereo 3D.

And on top of that is the capability to output video at a mind-blowing 2560x1600 resolution -- basically hotter than the sun, or something like that.

Effect on battery life -- it's really better to call it "power consumption" at this early stage -- well, Nvidia constantly stresses it's one of its main concerns. And, again, you have to remember that multiple cores doesn't mean an exponential increase in power consumption. And besides, we'll worry about that once it's in consumer facing devices.

So when will we see these quad-core chips in something we can buy? Nvidia tells us tablets around August, and phones by the end of the year. Yes, that soon.

Check out our demo after the break. You might want to sit down first.

Youtube link for mobile viewing

Reader comments

Nvidia quad-core mobile processor demo


WHAT!!!!!!!!! August of this year, that's insane. Xoom buyers might want to wait just a little while longer. This is starting to get pretty sick.

To heck with the Xoom. I'm not buying a tablet until Kal-El is out and my phone upgrade isn't coming any time this year, so I'll be waiting for Kal-El for that too. :-)

this is BS
Who needs quad core in their phone anyways?
In a tablet maybe
Im getting a dual core phone and im sure ill be happy with it

careful...pugs in the bushes ready to pounce you for talking such slander. I made a similar response before and someone got seriously butt-hurt over it...as if I just **** their mother.

You were the one that got butt hurt over there, not them. They were right, you were wrong. There is nothing more to it.

Just because YOU can't find a use for new tech, doesn't mean someone else won't. If you build the hardware, the software will come. Real world uses could come, but the reality is.. it's for gaming. But then, on your average desktop... what do you do that actually USES the power present? (I ask generalized, not you specifically) The average user doesn't need all that power.

What's BS about it? Im not pouncing on you or anything of the sort, but I ask why not put quad core in a phone? I'm sure you'll be happy with your dual-core phone, as many other people will be as well, but why speak as if you wish to halt the advance of mobile technology after dual core processors? I'm sure phones of the future will be able to use every bit of processing power these cpu's produce, and then the 8 core mobile processors will be introduced..

we're now ushering in the era (on the technical side, anyway) of quad-core mobile professors.

quad-core mobile "PROFESSORS"? maybe now our colleges will do better at teaching the leaders of tomorrow.

NVIDIA is killing it.....this is one of those stories that I wish I wouldn't be a tech savvy person and reading this because it makes me not want to buy a tablet or phone until this thing is out. I guess that's a tech persons dilemma, if you wait, your always waiting because new cooler shit is always around the corner. It just seems like before NVIDIA, a company hasn't revealed so much ahead of time. I guess since they come from the pc graphics card world, that's how they run their business, and probably they didn't want any other CPU mfg to get attention.

Man, I'm right there with you. I swallowed the red pill(Matrix) reading Android Central dailey and not that I'm that tech savy but now I'm constantly looking to see what's next, what's next?! LOL, yeah I'm not buying anything for a while...there's so many products coming, I'm that impatient kid waiting on Xmas Eve...

Luckily for me I don't need to worry about getting the newest technology whenever it becomes available. As much as I would like to it would be followed by an equal amount of clothes spending by my better half. Since that would hurt I have to really plan out purchases. For Christmas I asked everyone for Barnes and Noble Gift Cards and I combined them all to get a Nook Color which will need to meet my tablet needs for a couple of years.

I couldn't believe a tablet was able to render that much action in a game and still pan without any lag. Wow! Mobile World has been much more exciting than I thought it would,

This seems a little overkill and just like well ... too soon.

We have 1ghz single-cores as the high end for like over a year, hell we've only recently started seeing products with 1.2/1.5ghz single-cores.

Then in the next month or so we'll have 1ghz dual-cores, and now you're saying well have quad-cores less than 6 months after that?

Something just feels off about this.

If not, I guess I'll be looking for a discounted Xoom late summer/early fall as it'll probably get a nice drop once the quad-cores hit the stage.

This just killed Moto Xoom sales and LG G-Slate...LOL.
If they had this chip inside, at least they'd be able to justify their $800-1000 prices :-)

Have you guys every just really set down and thought about androids other competition? you dont hear windows or apple hard ware and software evoloing almost every week! Its crazy how fast we are moving, while still have decent quality mid ter phones as well

Look at the pace of the GPU race with ATI and nVidia. They are well accustomed to this pace, and that is good for the consumer. It forces TI and Qualcomm to compete, and we all win.

Mobile computing world, meet nVidia's INSANE 6 month refresh they've been doing for the past decade on the desktop. The fun is just beginning...

I wonder if anyone will step up to the plate, or if every other SOC maker will just forgo the high-end to nVidia and instead fight for midrange/value markets?

Those of you worried about battery life need to read up on CPU tech. For example the "rush to sleep" principle. The faster the CPU can get the job done the faster it can go to sleep which reduces power draw. Combined with smaller manufacturing processes, we will see more & faster cores taking less power than those old single core 65nm Snapdragons.

Yup and i bet Nvidia will have their Optimus tech in their devices as well so the GPU's wont be used unless asked to by certain programs. So i bet the battery life is going to be alot better than most think.

what can you do with a quad core phone that you cant do with a dual core phone?
Having 2 more cores dont add any value to the phone,except for gaming i guess,but everything else is the same,that's why i think its BS.

A 3d, google earth incorporated flight simulator would be able to use all cores and most of the gpu engines. I'm not talking about just the few buildings they render in city centers. A sim that simulated trees moving cars, houses, animated water and boats, this would be cool.

I saw a product similar to this called Tileproxy, but you need a quad core desktop to run it effectively. You create something that allows high fidelity ground textures with the 3d objects and surround sound, and I will sign up straight away.

A lot goes into a mobile processor than just the number of cores. I'd like to see how this competes with TI and Qualcomm's optimized dual cores. Not saying this is a bad processor, but I'm hesitant to jump on it just yet until we see some real world comparisons to what the competition has.

LG just dumped the Tegra 2 for a Snapdragon in their Revolution. Makes you wonder why...

Either way, all good for moving the entire industry forward.